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The Relationship between Human Resource Practices and Employee Attitudes in a Travel Agency

By Renier Steyn and Anton Grobler


This paper presents the case of a large travel agency and relationships between HR practices and employee attitudes (EA) in that specific organisation. A number of studies have shown that effective human resource (HR) practices correlate with positive employee attitudes (EA).The attitudes of interest in this study were job satisfaction, organisational commitment, work engagement as well as intention to quit. Positive EA are desirable as these are considered to constitute antecedents to organisational performance. As HR practices are under the control of managers, EA and organisational performance can be optimised should managers engage in implementing effective HR practices. Arguments for the use of universalistic, contingency and configurational perspectives in the implementation of HR practices are found in academic literature. However, literature generally does not indicate which perspective is applicable to a specific organisation. To optimise the validity of the results the relationship between HR practices and EA in the selected travel agency is contrasted with that of nine other organisations. Although the overall results suggest a confirmation of the universalistic perspective, where all HR practices generally relate to the desirable EA outcomes, the configuration of HR practices which relate to desirable EA outcomes in the travel agency was unique. This supports a configurational perspective in the particular organisation. The HR practice of training and development was found to be the most important predictor of EA in this travel agency. The generalisation of these results should however be done with caution, as the results are based on only one sample. Managers of travel agencies are therefore urged to investigate the possibility of the implementation or sustainment of training and development initiatives as this HR practice seems to have the most profound influence on EA in such organisationsGraduate School of Business Leadership (SBL

Topics: Tourism, travel agency, human resources management, employee attitudes
Year: 2014
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